Last year was the year of self-care, when we looked inwards and then on the internet, seeking solutions to everything from anxiety to hair fall, one of the biggest concerns in the pandemic era.
DIY became the hero and looking for masking ingredients in your kitchen cupboard the norm. In 2021, as covid-19 continues to dog us, consumers can look forward to “newer actives and formulations”, says Chytra V. Anand, cosmetic dermatologist and founder of Kosmoderma Clinics.
Experts like Apratim Goel, cosmetic dermatologist at Cutis Skin Solution, Mumbai, believe people will still prefer “clinic-like treatments”, such as microdermabrasion, at home. They expect the demand for home tools such as ultrasonic scrubs and brushes to grow. Dr Anand believes rotating, cleaning brushes for cleansing and exfoliation will start making their way to India. And they don’t expect a let-up in requests for the Zoom call face— Dr Goel, has, for instance noticed a demand among clients for non-invasive procedures such as botox and fillers.
In 2020, the focus was on making our natural skin look its best. The importance of hydration took centre stage and hyaluronic acid and vitamin C began showing up even in highly affordable drugstore products. “DIY therapies and oral supplements are here to stay and they will get refined. Instead of using home ingredients, the shift will be towards scientifically proven DIY formulations for 2021. It (2020) was the year of hyaluronic acid and this molecule will continue to trend along with vitamin C, steadily gaining popularity as an oral and a topical antioxidant. (But) with immunity on people’s minds, antioxidants like alpha-lipoic acid and curcumin are taking a front seat in 2021,” says Dr Anand.
Retinol, prescribed for several years as an anti-acne treatment, has been in demand more recently for its anti-ageing properties and power to resurface the skin’s texture and reduce the appearance of fine lines. But it’s an ingredient the skin takes time to get used to, so experts believe the ingredient bakuchiol may overtake it. “Though retinol is here to stay, as newer variants such as nano retinol and encapsulated retinol are less harsh, bakuchiol is an anti-ageing ingredient, similar to retinol, but it causes lesser irritation. It is not that photosensitive and the effects are the same. It will gain more popularity,” says Dr Goel.
With online consultation becoming a norm, skincare kits will be customised. “The focus on acids and peels will still be there but since we are speaking so much about immunity, skin immunity will come into focus, and we will so/word missing more probiotic skincare products. Also, local brands and natural, skin-friendly products will also continue to gain popularity,” says Dr Goel.
Acne-fighting skincare will be needed for maskne, or mask acne, as will hand-care products for sanitising-related problems. Calming ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile and cica extract and fragrance-free formulas will be used more commonly. Sunscreen, both oral and topical, will continue to be crucial, particularly products with ingredients, such as zinc and iron oxide, that offer blue-light protection.
Face rollers and massagers in home cabinets will be joined by at-home LED devices, says Dr Anand. “LED light devices help brighten the skin, reduce breakouts, rejuvenate and regenerate skin. LED hair caps also give hair growth stimulation and people will like having a laser-like therapy for their skin in the comforts of their home,” she predicts.